The Colin Kaepernick era in San Francisco is nearing its close.
The quarterback’s new agents told all 32 teams on Tuesday that he will be opting out of his contract with the 49ers, sources told NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport. Kaepernick was due $16.9 million in salary and bonuses in 2017.
This news comes just one week after new general manager John Lynch said Kaepernick left the team facility “excited” following a “positive discussion.”
Kaepernick’s exit from the Bay was a foregone conclusion following his tumultuous 2016 season. Rapoport reported early in December that Kap was likely to void his contract, an option that became available when he restructured his deal in October. It’s still possible Kaepernick can return to the 49ers at a reduced rate determined by the QB market.
Since he led San Francisco to its first Super Bowl appearance in 18 years in 2012, Kaepernick’s production has tapered off significantly. The quarterback’s already-low completion percentage dipped well below 60 percent in 2015 and 2016 and he has struggled to make strong throws past 10 yards and outside the numbers.
His off-field actions aside, the economic interest in Kaepernick from a football standpoint will be an intriguing sub-sub-plot to free agency. He hasn’t produced enough consistently to be a starting quarterback in 2017 for any team that’s not rebuilding, but his skill-set will still be valuable in a backup role.